Tennis is one of the many activities that keep Bloomington’s Cal Schadel busy and fit.

Tom Wallace, Star Tribune

How I Got This Body: Retired, but not from sports

  • Article by: Sheila Mulrooney Eldred
  • Special to the Star Tribune
  • September 3, 2011 - 3:16 PM

SEASONAL ATHLETE: The sport I like the best is whichever one I'm doing. In the winter it's usually cross-country skiing or volleyball; in the summer it's any number of things.

SOUTHERN ROOTS ... : In high school, I lived in southeast Virginia. During wartime we played baseball in a cow pasture -- and guess what we used for bases? I played high school football and I was on the track team. I starting throwing the javelin when I threw it back to the guy who threw javelin and threw it farther than he did. I had intentions of getting to pro ball, but I stretched a tendon pitching semi-pro ball in 1949. If I didn't think about it, my control was good, but if I got to thinking about it, I was off a couple of inches.

... BUT NORWEGIAN AT HEART: My wife and I moved here in 1992. My wife is a social worker and she's from here ... she's a typical Norwegian, and we decided Minnesota had a lot of lakes so there should be more fishing for me. That's when I started getting active in softball, volleyball and cross-country skiing. I broke a rib doing a Worldloppet race six years ago in Finland. There were over 14,000 skiers in the race and there were almost 14,000 ahead of me, and about five behind me. There was a sharp curve with a drop about halfway through, and it had turned into an icy luge run. I almost landed on my head, but instead I landed on my chest and broke a rib. I still had to ski five or six miles to the end.

KAYAK PARKING ONLY: I can't get the cars in the garage because we've got too many toys in there. I've got several little boats: new sea kayaks, sailboats.

NOT RETIRED FROM WORKING OUT: We've kind of finished our backpacking days now, but we still go car camping and hike to fish, and a lot of canoeing. We've been on many cross-country ski trips with groups. ... I go with guys much younger than me.

PAYING IT FORWARD: My wife and I volunteer with Inner City Tennis with little kids. I love the kids -- they're something else. We do all sorts of aerobic games and they learn how to listen and pay attention. But whatever sport is in, I look forward to it.

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